Editor's Rating

Have a listen to: "Life Afraid" and "Tug Of War"

7.5
Rating out of 10

Set It Off – Upside Down

Release Date: 7th October 2016
Equal Vision Records/Rude Records
iTunes: http://apple.co/2fPvXMx

Esteemed members of the pop-punk community buckle up; Set It Off‘s latest album ‘Upside Down‘, is about to take us on a heady excursion through sound and nostalgia. Formed in 2008, the four piece from Tampa, Florida have released 3 full length albums with ‘Upside Down encapsulating 8 years of evolution through rock, pop and punk into a bitesize chunk of Set It Off uniqueness.

 Now don’t get me wrong; 2012’s ‘Cinematics and 2014’s Duality‘ are brilliant albums but it truly feels like Set It Off have found their sound. Think a mash up of Fall Out Boy and Panic At The Disco with some Daft Punk thrown in and a garnish of Twenty Øne Piløts. I guess this is to be expected with the foursome working alongside producers Brandon Paddock and Erik Ron who’ve both worked with Panic.

 At times a less seasoned pop-punker would be forgiven for mistaking Cody Carson’s vocals with those of FOB’s Patrick Stump. However you’d soon be pulled away from any FOB yearnings by the anthemic movement of track 3; ‘Life Afraid‘. This is where the lines between pop and rock start to blur but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. This track is truly early album fodder and worthy of its second single status; strategically placed to provide a little shot in the arm to the record accelerating us into mid album territory.

Tug Of War is another highlight coming in at track 7. You’re reaching back for older Set It Off, here, whilst steam-rollering into an evolved and matured musicianship unlike anything the Florida boys have offered before. The songwriting feels fresh and the elements of R&B that surge through the next couple of tracks, ‘Admit It‘ and ‘Hypnotized, bring a real air of originality and charm.

At times it feels the flow’s not quite there with the order of each track but the record certainly finishes on a gem; easing us out of our pop-punk coma and back into real life. ‘Me W/O Us somehow manages to slow us down whilst simultaneously getting right inside our angsty, inner teenager; the pulsing baseline walks hand in hand with he polished drums allowing the vocals to cascade across every inch of the track. You’ll be left unequivocally and undeniably craving more.

For Fans Of: Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy, Twenty Øne Piløts

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